January 31, 2004

Submission Guidelines

So... you want to write for Circling the Square?

Citizen! It is a bold and glorious thing you do, to offer to write about The Truth. The Truth will often bite you on the ass with mean Truth teeth; however, when the Truth starts purring, it's a lovely thing indeed. Good Truth. Nice Truth.

Our website, Circling the Square, is dedicated to the proposition that The Truth is best served free of charge, with wit and just a soupcon of satire.

We accept that all people have access to the Truth if they just look hard enough, so anyone can send us articles. We'll look them over, and if we believe they are True enough, we'll put them up on the web page, after a day or two to consult our joss sticks and deal with Hoyce, the demon of HTML. We generally do not edit the Truth, except when Hoyce creates typographical or grammatical errors in an article. We're afraid that while the Truth may make you free, it also is free: we do not pay for articles, since we don't make any money on this site.

But, you say, how may I know if what I write is the Truth, or just some garbage that belongs on Slashdot or the Nando Times? We've discovered that the Truth is topical, conspiratorial, and earnest. Some would also add that the Truth is amusing. We do not agree.

TOPICAL: our articles are based on current news. Ideally, stories should have a link to a news site somewhere in the article. We exist to cast doubt on "reality"; it's best to have a link to reality so we can reveal its hideous falsehood to the world.

CONSPIRATORIAL: They're out there, and it's our job to talk about them! Articles should clearly establish a villainous, evil organization that is behind seemingly innocuous events. Possibly two organizations. Three is overkill. Be sure to use proper adjectives like heinous, diabolical, and cabalistic; there are no adjectives too dark and evil for the cackling hierarchs of malice who lead organizations like HYDRA, SPECTRE, KAOS, THRUSH, and PAGAN.

EARNEST: The tone is the trickiest part of the CtS story. There are people out there who Believe in conspiracies, but they don't go far enough in their beliefs: they are unwilling to see the actions of conspiracies in activities such as eating tuna and watching the Olympics. We know better. We demand committed research from our writers: you must ferret out every trace of the conspiracy, and report its activities with unstinting zeal, and must not embrace a limited conspiracy, or show doubts about the conspiracy's existence! We are the Jehovah's Witnesses of the fringe!

AMUSING: We are not amusing. We are Serious. Humor, however, is often the best way to throw the conspiracy off of our scent. If our writers didn't know howto employ the occasional joke or droll reference to popular culture, they would have been "erased" by the Powers That Be long ago.

For some reason, some article writers think that we are just like the Onion. Nothing could be further from the Truth. The Onion is a tissue of lies. We are the Truth. The Onion is fake news stories. We are twisted, yet shockingly accurate, commentary on real news stories. You must understand the difference if you are to write for us!

We're also open to ideas for columns. If you have an idea for a column, please let us know. Note that we'd expect a fairly constant output from a columnist.

As an elementary safety precaution, we ask that all contributors to our website use a pseudonym. It's probably best to bounce any emails to us through at least three anonymous servers as well.

Please give us your real life history, judiciously edited, for use in our Bios section; take a look at our True histories as an example of what is safe to write, and what is not.

If you believe you are up to the task, please send your story pitches/submissions to contribute@circling.org.

Posted by scola at January 31, 2004 06:09 PM
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